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BUSINESS NEWS APRIL 4th, 2016


PROSECUTORS OPEN PROBES AS WORLD'S WEALTHY DENY 'PANAMA PAPERS' LINKS

Governments across the world began investigating possible financial wrongdoing by the rich and powerful on Monday after a leak of four decades of documents from a Panamanian law firm that specialized in setting up offshore companies.The "Panama Papers" revealed financial arrangements of politicians and public figures including friends of Russian President Vladimir Putin, relatives of the prime ministers of Britain, Iceland and Pakistan, and the president of Ukraine..

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U.S. TREASURY TACKLES TAX INVERSIONS; PFIZER-ALLERGAN IN SPOTLIGHT

The U.S. Treasury Department on Monday took new steps to curb tax-avoiding "inversion" deals in which a U.S. company reincorporates overseas after purchasing a foreign company, and shares of Allergan Plc (AGN.N), the linchpin of a big pending inversion deal, slumped.In the largest inversion transaction ever, Dublin-based Allergan has agreed to be bought by New York's Pfizer Inc (PFE.N). Allergan's shares fell 19 percent in after-market trading.Pfizer and Allergan said they are reviewing the Treasury Department's notice. "Prior to completing any review, we won't speculate on any potential impact,” the companies said in a statement.

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DISNEY EXPANDING SEARCH FOR NEW CEO, COO STAGGS LEAVING

Walt Disney Co Chief Operating Officer Tom Staggs, who had been widely expected to be the media and entertainment company's next chief executive, will step down on May 6 as the board expands its search for a successor to Bob Iger, the company said on Monday.The change comes about two years before Iger, Disney's chief executive and chairman, is due to retire.A source with knowledge of the situation said Staggs, 55, had learned the board was going to broaden its search for a new leader, and that both parties mutually decided he would step down. The source requested anonymity because the reasons for the move have not been announced.

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WALL STREET PULLS BACK AFTER RECENT RALLY

U.S. stocks ended weaker on Monday, pulling back from a recent rally that took them to new 2016 highs, as losses in commodity-related and industrial shares offset gains in healthcare.The S&P materials sector .SPLRCM fell 1 percent after copper prices touched their lowest in a month, while energy shares .SPNY slipped with oil prices.

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